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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

QUESTIONS are ANSWERED! Q #13

Answers from the lovely birthmothers:
Note – not every birthmother has answered every singlequestion, please match the fonts to know whose response you are reading!

if you would like to answers any of the questions please do so in the comment section and be sure to leave the number of the question that is being answered.

Stefanie     http://stefaniejinelle.blogspot.com/
Megan  http://angryoctopusstudios.blogspot.com/
Alyssa       one of our guest bloggers
Anna      http://annamaryk.blogspot.com
Jennilee     one of our guest bloggers
Amanda     http://travisandamandarosemans.blogspot.com/
Nicole    http://lifeafterfirstmom.blogspot.com/
Kelsey    http://thebestforyoubook.blogspot.com/
Shannon
Michelle
Andee      http://anabananandee.blogspot.com/
Britney
Janessa     http://scottandjanessa.blogspot.com/
Jennifer
Shanna    one of our blog author



13. has any ones aparents not followed through with the contact they had promised? if so how do you handle and cope with that?

Everything is good on this one. I have always been very respectful and honest with my adoptive couple which I believe in return has made them want to stay in contact and send pictures still, 7 years later.

I don't think my couple has ever not followed through. I think I kind of expected more contact. While I was pregnant I would call the adoptive mom and talk to her about anything and about the doctors appointments just so she can be involved. And I kind of wanted it to be that way after Olivia is born but I didn't express that and I realize now that she probably couldn't have done that which is totally fine. I'm cool with e-mail updates just as long as I get one (:

11 comments:

Brit O'Connor said...

I think my daughter's adoptive parents would like to see me even more than they do. They see my family pretty often- but I've backed off a little bit because its getting harder for me as she gets older to see her.

Luckily, her parents have been amazing through everything- and email, send pictures, meet up whenever me or my family want to. :)

-Britney

Danielle S said...

My daughter's parents have been wonderfully and have done more than they promised as far as maintaining a relationship with me. They update a picture website at least weekly- I have thousands of photos, literally, of my daughter and she's just 7 months- and they mail me framed prints of the best ones. We talk by email and by phone 1-2 times a week and they've invited me to visit whenever I feel like it. They're incredible.

Anonymous said...

Although my son's adoption is open, it's been painful to have it be very very different than they agreed too. I wanted the type of open adoption where we were like extended family to each other. I wanted to meet the important people in my son's life, ie his extended family of aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. My son is now a school age child and I have never met their extended family and sadly likely never will. One person in particular I connected with in their profile (adoptive grandfather), I will never get to meet as he has since passed away. I don't need for their extended family to be a big part of my life but it would be nice to once meet them.

For the first yr of my son's life, I practically begged, repeatedly, to meet the extended family and it only upset my son's parents so I stopped. I didn't want to end up without the relationship we do have. Sadly some relationship is better than none.

The photos that were promised on regular intervals have never happened. The first couple yrs they were occasionally, not on the schedule we agreed to and then they just pretty much stopped, other than maybe a school pic for Christmas. Last year even that ended up being a tiny wallet size photo.

The letters were agreed upon twice a yr, haven't seen them since about 18 mos.

The vidoes are supposed to be once a yr. My son is six and I have three.....two of them only arrived after I spent months begging for them. They just don't mean the same thing if I have to beg for them.

I have thought for yrs that if I didn't ask for every visit, we would likely never get together. It hurts that they never initiate anything. Makes me feel like they don't really want me in their lives, and I am a commitment instead. I once went much longer then what we had planned in terms of time frames for visits, before I asked when the next one would be. I did that as I wanted to know if they would contact me. It just really hurt me when almost three times the length of time we planned to have between visits passed. I finally contacted them. So not what we planned while I was pregnant. Of course this is very different than what it was like while I was pregnant when they seemed interested in me.

I don't do one way relationships, even with my own family...just stopped seeing them instead because relationships are supposed to be mutual and by parties that both want the relationship. This is the one relationship I won't walk away from, even if I have to do all the pursuing but it drives me crazy.

How do I deal with all this? I don't so well anymore, pretty much just don't acknowledge it's an issue. I used to talk to her about it and beg for what they agreed to and beg to see their family and be at his bday parties like they agreed to etc. But doing those things and being ignored just made me very sad and then angry. I didn't want to be angry so I stopped doing those things. I haven't thought about it in a while and now that I am while writing this, I have a lump in my throat and am on the verge of tears. *sigh*

I try not to focus on what I don't have and focus on what we do have and that my son has me in his life and can always ask me anything he wants to know etc. He knows I love him. I was just thinking last week, he's 1/3 of the way to adulthood and with time, I will be able to communicate with him directly, ie not email his mom. One day he will be old enough to pick up the phone or talk to me on Facebook or email me himself. One day, hopefully, when I call they won't ignore my phone calls, he will be old enough to answer the phone himself, should he choose too.

I have to focus on what we do have in order to be happy.

Anonymous said...

6 mos in, I had to sit back and ask does openness after placement really matter?

If my adoption decision was about what was best for me, then the answer would have be absolutely YES.

But my decision was about what was truly best for the baby, so the answer for me is NO!

I realized that whether or not they lived up to their agreement about getting pictures to me on a certain timetable did not have any implications on whether or not I had chosen an adoption plan.

Ultimately all I wanted from adoption was simply that which I could not give. But I had to have a good friend hold the mirror in front of my face to remind me of that when I was struggling with communication failure post placement. She reminded me, that this (adoption) was never about ME! And I had to stop making it be about me and my needs/wants. I am grateful for that bold faced accusation, because I HAD forgotten that simplicity- it really was not about me and what I wanted after placement; everything I ever wanted I got AT placement.

Don't get me wrong, open adoption is the ideal for everyone involved and its awful to be led to think you will have an open adoption after placement by the adoptive couple and its beyond heart wrenching to realize that they boldfaced lied to you, but peace has got to be found at some level or you will drive yourself crazy with anger, grief and hatred. And that is no way to live. I found peace. I am not happy about their lack of commitment and betrayal, but it's all I can do (be at peace). So I choose to be happy because I know my daughter is where she belongs.

And I believe that THAT is the ultimate sacrifice of a mother for her child.

Anonymous said...

I don't think a birthmom expecting to receive what she was promised in an open adoption is making it about her. Open adoption is supposed to be about the child but it's so hard to not be angry at the adoptive parents when they don't live up to their promises. For me open adoption is partly about always being available to my child, should my child need or want that relationship. How to keep that door open when you're angry at adoptive parents who betrayed you? So by not making a woman feel betrayed, that is best for the child.

Anonymous said...

I placed my son for adoption 7 years ago. Reading this everything sounds so one sided. The couple I chose for my son are his parents. I don't try to be. I think trying to involve yourselves too much frustrates the parents and makes them want to have more space. I get updates yearly which I am so grateful for. I have been able to move forward with my life. I would encourage majority of you to do the same. It is hard but important. Give the parents and your birth child space so they can bond and be happy. That is what we originally wanted for our children right? I have a friend who placed her little boy also and she won't let it go. It is eating her up...she wants visits still and she placed over a year ago. How can she move forward if she is still seeing her birth son? It makes it harder. Think of the children. Think of all sides...not just our side. I say that with respect.
Thanks
Grace, ID

Destiny Kroeber said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Destiny Kroeber said...

I placed my son for adoption 8 1/2 years ago, when I was 16 years old. The adoption plan was to be semi-open, with contact through letters and pictures. They agreed to send a letter and picture once a year after the 3 year mark. They were WONDERFULLY generous the first 2 years, then year 3, I received nothing. Year 4, they sent a letter and a picture, then I received nothing after that, up until last year I received a very short letter (which I was very grateful for) and a couple drawings that my son had drawn and nothing since then. It's been insanely hard and of course I have my ups and downs. Fortunately for me, the adoptive parents allowed me to write to my son as OFTEN as I wanted to (this was their offer, I didn't ask this in any way), so I think being able to write to him, which I do at least a few times a year, has helped me deal with it. It's painful not receiving updates, not knowing what he looks like or what his favorite things are, but at least I find comfort in knowing that he'll have my letters and pictures from ME, so he will know I love him and still think about him every day, which is more important to me than my own happiness. Afterall, HIS happiness is why I chose to place him in the first place. I'm grateful that they allow me to write to him, because honestly they don't HAVE to allow that at all. He is their son and I have no rights to him other than what they (and in the future; HE) wish to allow. So, as painful as it is for me... my decision wasn't FOR me, it was for him. I admit I get frustrated, which is just my selfish emotions coming out, but regardless of how frustrated or hurt I feel, the bottom line is, I have no right to ask for anything from them and I try to focus on being grateful for the things I do have, because it is probably more than a lot of birthmother's have and I should be thankful for that.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous who posted this...."How can she move forward if she is still seeing her birth son? It makes it harder. Think of the children. Think of all sides..."

I am the Anonymous poster above who posted about how things didn't happen as promised so I am guessing your comments where in part directed at me. Why do you assume that birthmothers can't see their child AND still "move forward"? I see my child several times a year and when I do, I am not at all "trying to parent him". When he cries, he goes to one of his parents, when he wants to cuddle with them while I am there, he does. Me visiting really isn't much different than his aunt or uncle visiting, I'm just another important person in his life that loves him. I have moved forward and am very happy with all I have accomplished his birth several yrs ago. We don't say to grandparents that they should't see their grandchild because then they can't move on with their lives. Why do people think such a thing about a birthmom? No, seeing my child doesn't make it harder at all. It makes it much much easier. Yes, for the first yr or so it was hard to leave each visit but I was able to feel peace with my decision to place my child for adoption BECAUSE I could see with my own eyes what wonderful parents he had and that he was well. Staying away would not have been easier, it would have drove me nuts because I would have been always wondering how my child was and what kind of parents he has. See him and them, I know those answers and don't have to wonder and therefore am freed to go on about my life.

Those of us in open adoptions ARE thinking of the children. Studies are very clear actually that open adoption is BEST FOR THE CHILD. Openness has been shown to have great advantages for all three members of the triad, including adoptive parents. I am thinking of my child when I visit him and tell him I love him. I am thinking of my child when I keep him connected to his sibling I am parenting as the sibling attends visits too. I am thinking of my child when I answer his questions. I am thinking of my child when I give him a hug when he wants me too. I am thinking of my child when he sees how I cooperate with and respect his parents. I was thinking of my child even in that first year when leaving each visit was so hard and I cried after I left each one but I kept up the relationship so he could have the relationship. I am thinking of him knowing he will never have to go searching for me or his sibling, we will just be people who he KNOWS love him who have always been a part of his life. I am thinking of my child when I know he won't feel abandoned because he can see and feel that he wasn't. I could go on and on....

Just because you think adoption should only be one way, doesn't make it so. Do some reading on openness studies and you will learn why of it's benefits, including to the child.

Dodger Gurl said...

When I found myself pregnant at the age of 22, already parenting a one year old child, I knew that there was no way I could be a single parent of another. I decided on placing my baby for adoption and through the little research I found online, I went in knowing exactly what I wanted. I didn't want to be a direct part of my daughter's life, but I wanted to see pictures and get letters every once in awhile so that I could watch her grow from afar. The adoptive parents and I decided on 4 times a year, every three months.

Ever since the beginning, getting pictures of her has felt like I am trying to pull teeth from them. The social workers from the agency I went through have had to call them to remind them over and over again. I ran into adoptive dad while he was doing a recruitment seminar at the college I was attending a couple of years ago. We talked about her and I told him that I look forward to hearing from them and that her pictures motivate me to be a better person, as I promised that little angel I would be someone when she decided to meet me again. Telling him I appreciated every single picture they sent still didn't change anything.

I made her a scrapbook about a year ago and never heard back. A part of me feels like they don't want to admit to themselves that she came from anywhere else, but them. My biggest fear is that they won't tell her where she came from. She is almost 5 now, and I feel like this is the way it will always be and I just have to deal with it.

Someone once told me that by requesting pictures from her family, I am not allowing them to fully accept her as theirs. That I am being selfish and should just let them be. I argued with this person and told them that I sacrificed a piece of my heart and thought that the least they could do was show me how well that turned out, for her and for them.

Anonymous said...

WHen I placed my daughter 4 years ago my heart broke into pieces as she was such a part of who I was at the time. The more I see pictures of her now and I see her smile and I see how happy she is with her parents my heart is beginning to mend and i feel confident moving forward with my life. It makes me sad that so many adoptions have become closed because everyone was on different pages. That happened to me. I understood the adoption as being more open then my couple did. THey saw it as sending pictures and letters through the agency every few months, whereas I thought I would be seeing my birthchild every couple months. It has taken a few years to see that what I thought I was promised... was never actually talked about... as far as... what we were comfortable with. I wish we would have written it out so everyone understood. I guess I assumed at the time that I was always welcome with them since we got along so well. Then after placement they asked for space. I understood...but I missed Emma a lot! I called anyway but they would ignore my calls. It was hard... finally I got through to them and they said they needed space and that the visits were too much.
The way I've coped is praying a lot! God helped me place my daughter and I have learned where my place is now. God helped me take a bad situation which I put myself into with that idiot I thought I loved and turn it into something great. Things are good now with my couple... I have adjusted... I get letters and pictures and I am content with that now.
I know the couple is amazing...they are good to Emma and they take care of her and she is happy and so loved...so I know that I will never be forgotten by her...they wouldn't let that happen. I hang onto that... I hang onto how I felt when I got my answer to place. I also cope by going to therapy. It has helped a lot.
Any of you in this same situation? My suggestion....give space and things will work out. I was 16 when I placed. Life is good and things will work out if you give it a chance. I was able to finish High School even though It was hard and I felt alone. I'm in college which I didn't ever think I would be able to say. Try to find the good in your situation. Look for the good in all things....what you do have....the couple...how happy your birthchild is now. It is about finding your place and understanding it.
sending you hugs,
Elizabeth, from Cali :)
p.s. I wish I had a blog so I could follow you all....

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